One of the unexpected benefits of having B husband about the house for a few weeks has been the opportunity it has given BM to meet up with old friends on a week-day evening. One such meeting took place last week in Covent Garden just as the weather was warming up towards the highs we have enjoyed over the past 3 days.
It was a bit cliched perhaps to meet in Covent Garden but you know, it must be at least 10 years since I was there at 6.30pm amidst the after-work rush, the dawdling tourists, the street performers et al and it felt so good! Alas, despite our promises that we would eat quickly and then have time to browse around the shops before they closed, it was in fact 10.30pm before we called it a night at Pizza Express (again with the clicheed reliability, I know...)
All now in our forties, it seems that we have been battered a little by life one way or another over the past few years in particular: at any rate we are not the Edna O'Brien 'Country Girls' we were, back in 1987 when we first met fresh from Ireland and woefully naive. So the conversation drifted, as these things do amongst old friends, from everything such as, longer tunics with leggings (can we still wear them ?) to the loss of one's parents or siblings to cosmetic surgery and back to children and spouses (which also came along after we had met and become friends). Small wonder we never got to the shops!
Anyway it was restorative, balm and a comfort to the soul and as if any were needed, a reminder that some things like old friendships, no matter the time lapse between meetings, are a fixed reliable point in a changing world.